Iran's foreign minister is criticizing Saudi-led airstrikes in Yemen but says the focus at nuclear talks between his nation and six world powers remains on reaching a deal.

Mohammad Javad Zarif leads the Iranian delegation at the talks. He said Friday that Iran condemns the air attacks on Yemen's Shiite rebels.

He says the air strikes "have to stop and everybody has to encourage dialogue and national reconciliation in Yemen."

The violence is straining relations between the Sunni Saudis and predominantly Shiite Iran.

But Zarif tells The Associated Press that while the Yemen crisis is being informally discussed at the talks, they remain confined to the nuclear issue.

Zarif says he hopes the sides will reach a preliminary nuclear deal by the March 31 target date.